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Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458 All rights reserved 0 Criminology: A Sociological.

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Presentation on theme: "Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458 All rights reserved 0 Criminology: A Sociological."— Presentation transcript:

1 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 0 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Lesson 11 - Property Crime and Fraud

2 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 1 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Defining Property Crime Part I - Index Crimes –Burglary: The attempted or completed “unlawful entry of a structure to commit a felony or a theft” –Larceny/theft: The “unlawful taking, carrying, leading, or riding away of property from possession… of another” Motor vehicle theft –Arson: The “willful or malicious burning or attempting to burn, with or without intent to defraud, a dwelling house, public building, motor vehicle…”

3 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 2 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan National Hot Spots for Car Theft

4 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 3 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Defining Property Crime Part II –Forgery/counterfeiting: Making, altering, uttering, or possessing, with intent to defraud, anything false in the semblance of that which is true –Fraud: Obtaining money or property by false pretenses” –Buying, receiving, possessing stolen property –Embezzlement: Misappropriation or misapplication of money or property entrusted to one’s care

5 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 4 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan The Extent of Property Crime Introduction –UCR and NCVS provide different estimates of property crime –Both indicate property crime has declined since early 1990s –Target hardening

6 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 5 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan The Patterning of Property Crime Geographic patterns –Highest in West and lowest in Northwest (NCVS) –UCR indicates highest in the South –Lower in rural areas compared to urban

7 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 6 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan “Young person’s offense” Males account for a majority of property- crime arrests. –Females more involved in shoplifting (although more males shoplift than females) Typical property offender is white, although African-Americans disproportionately represented The Patterning of Property Crime

8 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 7 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan The Social Organization of Property Crime Introduction –Social organization: Refers to roles different property criminals play and social networks supporting their criminal ways –Amateur theft: Young, unskilled and commit when opportunity arises –Professional theft: Older and more skilled; plan offenses carefully

9 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 8 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan –Snitches: Amateur shoplifters who steal items of little value they keep for themselves –Boosters: Skilled professionals who sell their stolen goods to fences or pawnshops –Joyriding: Committed usually by teen boys who take the car for a ride then dump it Professional theft: Older, more skilled thieves, resell cars or dismantle them for parts in chop shops The Social Organization of Property Crime

10 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 9 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Burglary Three categories (Maguire, 1982) –Low-level: Adolescents and young adults get together to commit spontaneous, unskilled burglaries –Middle-range: Older; spend time looking for attractive targets; act alone; more able to defeat home burglary systems –High-level: Most skilled of all, act in groups of two or more; extensive planning; willing to travel long distance to target

11 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 10 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Support system –Tipsters and Fences  Tipsters give burglars info on suitable targets  Fences sell stolen good Decision making in burglary –Research inconsistent on thought given to risk of arrest, prosecution, and incarceration –Look for homes believed to be unoccupied at the time Burglary

12 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 11 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Property Crime Victimization: Costs and Circumstances Millions spent each year on security systems UCR estimates burglary victims lose billions each year –$4.6 billion in 2008 About 70% are residential burglaries –About 30% are commercial UCR estimates that each 2008 larceny cost its victims an average $925 –Total loss: $6.1 billion

13 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 12 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Explaining Property Crime Cultural Emphasis on Economic Success –Emphasis on economic success underlies economic crime –Emphases on competition and individualism –Auto theft; vehicle as a status symbol of success –Class position affects way we break the law for economic gain

14 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 13 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Techniques of Neutralization –Property offenders use rationalizations (i.e. store is ripping us off, everyone else does, the business is big and rich, won’t miss it –Fences use rationalizations (i.e. I’m not crawling in windows, I’m conducting business by selling goods people want) Explaining Property Crime

15 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 14 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Economic Deprivation and Unemployment –Some research suggests deprivation increases property crime because it promotes social disorganization  Indirect effect  Direct effect –Research inconsistent on effect of unemployment on property crime  Methodological differences in studies  Routine activities/lifestyles may explain inconsistent findings Explaining Property Crime

16 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 15 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Routine Activities and Social Process Factors –Certain activities and lifestyles put people more at risk Property Crime for Thrills –Crime is seductive –Sneaky thrill crimes –People desire goods regardless of their structural conditions Explaining Property Crime

17 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 16 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Shoplifting Shoplifting is exciting for many Teen subculture is consumer oriented, feel pressured to steal Routine activities theory helps explain shoplifting also; malls

18 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 17 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Reducing Property Crime The Criminal Justice System –More funding for police, prisons –Many criminals are not deterred from committing property crime –Target hardening: making it difficult for thieves to burglarize, steal cars or whatever their goal

19 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 18 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Situational Prevention: Target Hardening Stronger locks Better lighting Burglar alarms Home-security measures Dog Neighborhood watch groups Presence of someone at home

20 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 19 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Community Prevention Situational prevention at the community level –Focus on streets and whole neighborhoods  Examples:  Better street lighting  Camera surveillance  Reconfiguring of physical space to establish clearer sight lines  Neighborhood watch organizations

21 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 20 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Fraud Identity theft –Involves acquiring someone else’s credit card number, Social Security number, bank account information, etc. Check fraud Credit card fraud Tax fraud –Tax evasion –Involves the intentional failure to pay all taxes owed Tax gap (IRS)

22 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 21 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Insurance Fraud –Tax gap; difference between owed and collected –Phony deductions –Hiding assets –Auto insurance fraud Phony injuries from accidents False stolen car reports Fraud

23 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 22 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan Cybercrime –Advent of Internet has created new types of crimes –Hacking: breaking into a website or acquiring information from someone’s computer –Copyright laws and plagiarism –Fraudulent sites Computer Fraud and Crime

24 Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006, 2001, 1997 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey All rights reserved 23 Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 5/e Steven E. Barkan The Cost of Fraud Check fraud: $20 billion Identity theft: $53 billion Tax fraud: $290 billion Insurance fraud: $85 billion to $120 billion TOTAL: $448 billion annually


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